Virginia Tech

One class down, three to go

I took my final exam for CS 1604 – Introduction to the Internet today.  I got an A, and I’m now done with the class.  Wednesday, I have my Statistics for Electrical Engineers final, and then I have my last two finals (Microprocessor System Design and Numerical Methods) on Friday.  One more week, baby!

I will be in town through graduation, and it’s currently looking like I will be in Digital Design II during the second summer session.


Don’t Substitute Praying for Obeying

AW TozerSo Samuel said: “Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed than the fat of rams.” (1 Samuel 15:22)

Have you noticed how much praying for revival has been going on of late-and how little revival has resulted?

Considering the volume of prayer that is ascending these days, rivers of revival should be flowing in blessing throughout the land. That no such results are in evidence should not discourage us; rather it should stir us to find out why our prayers are not answered….

I believe our problem is that we have been trying to substitute praying for obeying; and it simply will not work . . .

Prayer is never an acceptable substitute for obedience. The sovereign Lord accepts no offering from His creatures that is not accompanied by obedience. To pray for revival while ignoring or actually flouting the plain precept laid down in the Scriptures is to waste a lot of words and get nothing for our trouble. (Of God and Men, 55-57.)

“Search me, O God, and know my heart; show me any wicked way that needs to be corrected in my own life before revival can come. I’m praying for revival; help me to also be obeying. Amen.”

-AW Tozer


“Courage in God is found in the memory of God’s provision.”

Good quote from Todd Philips, teaching about Joshua.


24 hour prayer was amazing

Prayer stationThanks to all of you who came out and prayed during the vtONE 24 hour prayer event. I’ll probably post more about it over the next few days. Here’s a link to the official vtONE post about the prayer event, including the text of the prayer stations we used.


A quote that I keep coming back to

“God wants us to be holy, we only want to be happy.” – Francis Chan

Amazing quote from the sectional on suffering (I almost wrote the suffering on sectional–ha!) from Passion 06.  Think about that today.


Answered prayers

vtONE group prayerWhen the disciples saw it, they marveled, saying, “How did the fig tree wither at once?” And Jesus answered them, “Truly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ it will happen. And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith.” (Matthew 21:20-22 ESV)

Over the past several months, I’ve learned more about prayer than in the rest of my life combined. I’ve seen so many prayers answered that there’s no way that I can deny what God is doing in this time and place. I’ve also learned to have faith that God will answer our prayers in bigger ways that I can imagine. God sees through our words to the heart, and he is moved not by elaborate words but the deepest desires of our hearts. Do you believe that He will answer your prayers?

Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen. (Ephesians 3:20-21 ESV)

Here are some highlights of answered prayers from the past six months: Someone that I had been praying would come to know Christ for about six months did. I had another two people that I felt I should start praying for several months ago, and one of them has gotten right with God, grown amazingly, and is trying to help the other guy I’ve been praying for. We’ve seen more answered prayers through vtONE this year than ever before–relating to getting people praying together, how groups work together, how people see vtONE.

I started writing down what I’ve been praying for on November 13. The first list of things that I was praying for has over 20 things on it, most of them being big things, and all but two have been answered! God is working powerfully, and I believe that He can do anything that we ask through prayer.

You do not have because you do not ask. (James 4:2b ESV)

Get yourself right with God and then get yourself praying! God makes us righteous if we confess our sins and ask for forgiveness (see 1 John 1:8-9).

Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise. Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working. Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed fervently that it might not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain on the earth. Then he prayed again, and heaven gave rain, and the earth bore its fruit. (James 5:13-18 ESV)

Faith General Virginia Tech

Quoted about the Easter Service

Frank Beamer speakingOn Sunday, nlcf joined with Campus Crusade, Athletes in Action, Cornerstone, and Blacksburg United Methodist Church (think Wesley Foundation) for a combined Easter service in Burruss Auditorium. Some of the featured speakers included student athletes and coaches, including football’s head coach Frank Beamer.

The Collegiate Times wrote an article about Beamer’s participation in the service, and they quoted me. The article is at the bottom of the front page, and I’m quoted in the top of the second column.

Overall, I thought the service was well done. Musically, there were some rough edges, but it was great seeing so many people participate in the service. The sermon in two parts was well done, and I thought all of the students and coaches who spoke did a good job. It’s always great to see celebrities talking about their faith in Christ.

Book Review Faith

Book review: The Organic Church

The Organic Church coverThis week, I finished reading The Organic Church, a book about church planting. Neil Cole writes about “growing faith where life happens.” I think that’s one of the problems the American church is facing today. For so many people, what they experience on Sunday has nothing to do with what they live on Monday. Even so, this book was a tough read, largely becase Cole says some hard to hear things for church leaders that I think are accurate but still no fun to hear.

I’ve become increasingly convinced that what most churches do on Sundays isn’t really what the church is about. It’s more like the city wide gatherings talked about in the New Testament, where we come together in unity and encourage each other through our numbers. However, the real church is what happens when small groups of believers get together for the common purpose of doing life together.

Churches as we know them tend to remove the power from the people in a way that weakens the whole church. I picked up a lot that I’m going to put into practice about empowering individuals to be the church and to multiply the kingdom of God through their lives. This book is a great and challenging read for church leaders, small group leaders, and anyone interested in planting churches.

I decided to order and read the book after reading about it on You Can Know God. The pdf at the bottom of the post about the book is an excellent summary and is what convinced me to read it.


Don’t you feel like this some days?

Sharp edges
Don’t you feel like the important stuff is glossed over at the expense of the fluff some days?


The Empty Tomb

Empty tombBut the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. (Matthew 28:5-6 ESV)

The empty tomb is one of the easily forgotten parts of scripture. But the empty tomb is the proof that Jesus of Nazareth is the Messiah, God’s only son. Jesus of Nazareth was a historical man who was born around 4 BC and died around 30 AD. Those facts aren’t largely contested, and are backed up by many sources from that period. Around that time period, Israel was being persecuted by Rome, and Israel felt distant from God. No prophet had spoken in years, and people were beginning to lose hope.

Many men had claimed to be the messiah, but all of them died human deaths and that was the end of their claim. People don’t follow dead messiahs. But that’s what makes Jesus different. The Romans were aware that they needed to produce a body to prove that Jesus was dead and gone, so they guarded the tomb so that his followers couldn’t take his body and claim he was still alive. But even with a large stone over the entrance and an armed guard wasn’t enough to stop the power of God.

On Sunday morning, the body was gone. Jesus rose from the dead and walked out of the tomb, where he interacted with hundreds of people until he went to be with his Father in Heaven. There was no corpse left behind on Earth. All the proof that was needed to show that Jesus was not the Messiah was a body. It wasn’t hard to produce a body when the most powerful military in the world was guarding the tomb, but no one was able to produce a corpse for Jesus.

The empty tomb is more than enough to show us that Jesus conqured death, and is now in Heaven with his Father. Today we celebrate that empty tomb. Don’t let yourself trivialize this amazing act of God’s power!

I pray that you will begin to understand the incredible greatness of his power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms. Now he is far above any ruler or authority or power or leader or anything else in this world or in the world to come. (Ephesians 1:19:21 NLT)

He is risen! He is risen indeed!